adjusting snare wire tension?

ive changed a fair amount of reso heads on snares, and im ok at tuning them. the problem i have is a method for adjusting tension for snare wires after a removal. i tried a search and just got info about snare wire types. any help would be appreciated.


Platinum Member
Snare wires (when installed evenly) tend to let you know, in no uncertain terms, when they're within their usable range. It goes from no-contact, to contact, to loose, to normal, to tight, to completely choked. It's honestly only a half dozen turns on a p85 from one extreme to the other.

I tend to practice with my wires on the loose side, which forces me to play dynamically and to use proper technique. If I were to play in a band driven by a cracking backbeat, I'd go tight so I didn't have to think about it.


"Uncle Larry"
When you're ready for wires, loosen your strainer tension knob all the way until just before it falls off. Now make sure your snare throw off is thrown off.

Put the wires on and tighten them as much as you can by hand and tie them off or clamp the straps. Make sure when you clamp the straps that your throw off is all the way off. Now engage the snares and bring your tension knob up to the tautness you like. If you got them too tight, loosen a strap. If it's not tight enough you didn't do it right.


Platinum Member
You're welcome. If you need more advice please ask.
The important things to remember is that the snares have to be inside of the bearing edge and there can't be any rouge loose strands.
I often make tension adjustments on the strainer throughout the night as I play.